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Archive for September, 2009...

Part III of how it all started

September 28, 2009

Click Here for one of a kind bracelets

Click Here for one of a kind bracelets

So last time I left you, we were talking about Mike’s transfer and what I was going to do with Around the Om.

Due to constraints with our impending move, we were limited by weight and I couldn’t bring all of the inventory I accumulated with me. So I turned to Beth and asked if she would store and ship my items. Very very very luckily for me, she agreed. She is super supportive and always helped me with a plethora of ideas. She also seemed to have a good eye for what product would sell well on the west coast. After a few moves over the past two years, I got a little burned out in the Around the Om department. Finally, after being settled for more than 4 months I turned to Beth again to get my first business going again. Supportive as ever, she said yes and here we are! Tadah!

Click Here for Great Statues

Click Here for Great Statues

We are now working together to pump new blood into the items we love and continue to import. We work hard to ensure items are fairly traded and people in the supply chain are paid fairly. Many of our items are limited in quantity too and priced for the holidays!

Thanks for taking your time to find out how Around the Om got started!

I love your emails!

September 27, 2009

I love getting your emails!

One of Darn Good Yarn’s Fans sent me this article about Stress Eating and Knitting…. hmm I wonder if I knit really really fast if I can burn the pounds off… Enjoy!

Did you know that knitting may be the perfect antidote to stress eating? So if you think knitting isn’t cool, you may just want to reconsider.

A 2009 study published in the journal of Eating and Weight Disorders put knitting to the test. The researchers wanted to see if knitting had any notable clinical benefits and whether it could be a useful tool in helping people lessen the amount of obsessing they do about food and their weight.

Avid knitters have been telling us for years about the therapeutic benefits of knitting. But how could it help prevent comfort eating? In part, the rhythmic movements and clicking of the needles can put you into a zone-like state. It is much like the trance comfort eaters experience while chewing on food. Thinking about nothing is boring and often a trigger for mindless eating. Doing something easy yet productive, like knitting, is a welcome mini break for an overloaded, stressed out mind.

The Study: The participants in this study were seeking treatment at an eating disorder treatment facility. In other words, these were people who chronically struggle with anxious thoughts about food and their weight. Their issues are generally much more intense than the typical emotional eater (so if it works for them, it is likely to work for you).

Intervention: The participants were taught how to knit and given supplies.
Results: The results? Overall, the participants reported that they were much less preoccupied with anxious thoughts of food and weight while knitting.

Almost three quarters of the participants indicated that knitting helped them in these ways:

Lessened the intensity of their fears and thoughts about food/weight/shape
Helped to clear their mind
Reportedly had a calming and therapeutic effect

Why it Works: It is difficult to worry about food and do a visual spatial task at the same time. Something has to give. Also, creating something such as a blanket or scarf feels productive. Not to mention that you get a sense of achievement when you’ve mastered a new skill.

What if I Hate Knitting & Crafts But Need Help With Comfort Eating? That’s okay. We aren’t all meant to spin yarn into something crafty. If you don’t like knitting, try another visual spatial task (video games, puzzles, cross-stitching, painting, computer games). Or, see 50 Ways to Soothe Yourself Without Food which has a variety of other ideas on calming yourself without food.

So, the moral of the story: Take a knitting lesson from your grandmother or a class online. If you are a comfort eater, find a visual spatial task like knitting to keep your hands busy and give your mind a place to rest without food.
Given how easy and inexpensive knitting is, it is worth a try.

By the author of 50 Ways to Soothe Yourself Without Food and Eating Mindfully.
Dr. Susan AlbersAuthor, “50 Ways to Soothe Yourself Without Food” and “Eating Mindfully”
Posted: September 8, 2009

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-susan-albers/the-hippest-old-fashioned_b_278469.html

Fall 2009 Newsletter

September 25, 2009

How it all started

September 21, 2009

As I’m writing this I am trying so hard not to quote the theme song to the Fresh Prince of Bel Air:)
In my last post, I told you about the joining of Around the Om and Darn Good Yarn. Have you checked out the belly dance scarves or the Tibetan Prayer Flags yet?

 Click Here for Hand Pieced Vintage Silk Sari Pillow Cover

Click Here for Hand Pieced Vintage Silk Sari Pillow Cover

I’m nosey and if you’re like me you might like to see a glimpse into my world and how both of my businesses: Around the Om and Darn Good Yarn got started.

It all started when I married a great man I am desperately in love with my Mikey after I separated from the Air Force as an officer. Muah Love you schnoogie woogie pants. Shortly after we got hitched his job allowed us to move. I actually joke about being a professional mover” but I’ve been all over. For awhile, we did not know how long we would be at any job site so it made it near impossible to work a 9-5 job. But OMG, I needed to do something! I had watched every re-run of the Golden Girls and The Nanny on Lifetime and this needed to be stopped!

Mike and Squeakers

Mike and Squeakers

One day I had a light go off. I had all this great knowledge and experience in business from college and my ex-career and I’ve always loved anything that involved entrepreneurship. I’ve had little businesses as long as I could remember. A small home business would be portable and I could work on it when I had the time. Good solution!

Click Here For Some Om In Your Home

Click Here For Some Om In Your Home

So, what to sell, what to sell? Well, what do I like? I like color, I like exotic, I like eclectic, I like travel and I like to help people. Hmmm…how to combine all of these? I decided I was going to import items from all around the world. At this time I was renting a small area in the back of a home in Lincoln California and we had a bonus room. That bonus room quickly was filled with shelves, boxes, a work table, and a computer. (God bless Beth, out roommate, who watched as a box multiplied to boxes and then multiplied to shelves and shelves…) I started contacting different suppliers and purchasing all around the world. I knew for sure that I wanted to support the women from struggling countries produce and distribute products. I was adamant that I did not want to support child labor. This was very important to me that what I did would help and not hinder or hurt others. Aside from Around the Om turning profitable very quickly, I was able to give almost 10% of my sales back to UNICEF!

I began buying mixed lots to get a better idea of what I might want to carry. I ended up with tons of different items while doing this, all the time learning all about importing, tariffs, shipping etc. I was so excited I think I may have branched out into too many areas at once (it happens!). That has been a very useful lesson. But let me tell you Around the Om was and is great fun and lots of work. Every time a new product came in I felt like a giddy school kid getting a present. I found myself staying up late cataloging, organizing and getting the items ready for sale. There were many sleepless nights in the beginning for sure. Wait, what am I talking about, there still are!!!

Well then Mikey was transferred yet again and I could not take all these items with me just from the sheer weight and amount of items I had acquired. If I was going to be transferring every few months I was going to need some help.

Oh no what to do?!….stay tuned for the rest of the story. In the meantime, check out some of Around the Om’s new stuff!

Shake Your Hips Belly Dance Scarf

Shake Your Hips Belly Dance Scarf

Who needs Om for their home?

September 20, 2009

Click Here to Check Out the New Stuff

Click Here to Check Out the New Stuff

I was sitting here thinking about how I got to where I am today with this business Darn Good Yarn, it has become such a large part of my life. The great marriage of yarn, the environment and my passion for crafting. Looking back over the last few years the journey has bumpy and yet awesome at the same time. I wanted to also, thank all of my loyal friends, family, and customers for the support over the years.

Click Here For The New Collection

Click Here For The New Collection

As many you may know that Darn Good Yarn was not my first love/”go at business”. Darn Good Yarn was the product of Around the Om the older sister company of Darn Good Yarn. Around the Om has been in business since early 2006 and has displayed at Las Vegas trade shows to various shows around California. Luckily, my great friend Beth has helped me expand the lines that Around the Om carries and now through some re-organization we’ve decided to combine the stores for the time being!

(SHHHH- here is a secret- You may want to keep your eyes open because over the next few weeks I am going to be adding items at AMAZING prices to make way for more “Om”)

Coming soon…. how Around the Om began (which is really the birthplace of Darn Good Yarn!)

DarnGoodYarn.com has an Etsy Store: RecycledSilkYarn

September 20, 2009

So, www.darngoodyarn.com, your source for premium recycled silk yarn, fair trade yarn and knitting and crochet accessories has opened up an etsy store so you can pick out individual balls of yarn! Our user name at etsy is RecycledSilkYarn Click Here to Visit

CROCHET: Free Scrubby Pattern

September 13, 2009

Who wants a easy crochet pattern? Who needs a quick gift? Who needs it to be cheap? Who needs it to be easy?

If you answered yes to any of these questions.. well thanks for sticking around:)

No, seriously, I have a great easy pattern for a hemp scrubbie for all of you crocheters out there!

Use it in the shower or on your counters. I actaully love to use mine in the kitchen because they take grit up super quick.

We all need to thank Melissa, one of Darn Good Yarn’s Sponsored Etsy Artists.

Click Here to Buy the Yarn

Click Here to Buy the Yarn

Here’s the pattern:
You’ll need one ball of hemp which will yield a couple of these puppies for you!
Finished size = just under 5 inches, round
Hook Size = E (3.5 mm)
Start chain 4, leaving a really long tail
Round 1: 16 dc in 1st ch, use tail to pull first chain closed, slip stitch to join. ch 3 (if you have a “hole” don’t worry, we can fix it later)
Round 2: 2 dc in each stitch, slip stitch to join, ch 3
Round 3: repeat round 2 (scrubber won’t be flat it will be “wavy”)
Round 5: 1 dc in each stitch, slip stitch to join, finish off leaving long tail.

Using yarn needle, weave in tail at center. If you have a “hole” use the tail to cris cross and pull the stitches together. Trim excess. Repeat with outside tail.

Another note: This is a free pattern which is not to be used for commercial gain. Feel free to tell your friends and use it how you like but respect the artist!

Click here to get the yarn!

Click here to get the yarn!

A special thanks to Melissa. Visit and support her sites which are:
http://madebymelissa.etsy.com
http://madebymelissa.blogspot.com

http://etsynj.blogspot.com

CROCHET: Free Recycled Silk Yarn Scarf Pattern

September 13, 2009

The Easy Crochet Scarf

The Easy Crochet Scarf

Ok, ok…through lots of loving heckling I present to you a crochet pattern..gasp!

Understand, I’m a knitter and thanks to my crafty MIL I now know how to crochet but not well enough to even put a pattern up for anyone to follow. With that in mind, I turned to one of Darn Good Yarn’s sponsored Etsy Artists, Melissa. She came up with two super simple crochet patterns.

This is the first, a nifty scarf very much like the “Darn Good Accessory”

Click Here to Check Out the Yarn

Click Here to Check Out the Yarn

So, here’s the pattern!
Easy Breezy Recycled Silk Skinny Scarf

Click here to buy now! DGY's Premium Recycled Silk Yarn

Click here to buy now! DGY's Premium Recycled Silk Yarn

Need: 2 balls recycled silk yarn:
Hook: H (5.0 mm)
roughly 4 inches wide, 90 inches long.
Ch 15
Round 1: sc in 2nd chain from hook and every ch across, ch 1, turn
Round 2: sc across, ch 1 turn
Rounds 3 – 5: repeat round 2
Round 6: sc in first stitch, *ch 3, sk 2, sc in next* repeat 3 times, sc in last stitch, ch 1, turn
Round 7: sc in first stitch, *ch 3, sc in ch 3 loop* repeat 3 times, sc in last stitch, ch 1, turn
Repeat round 7 until you reach the desired length, being sure to leave enough yarn to finish
Finish: sc in first stitch, 3 sc in each ch3 loop, sc in last stitch, ch 1, turn.
sc in each stitch, ch 1, turn
repeat 3 times, finish off, weave ends.

Note: Yarn sometimes twists, be careful to untwist it as you are crocheting. If yarn is too tight, upgrade to J hook. Your scarf will be slightly wider, you may need an additional ball of yarn to attain the desired length.

Click Here to Buy the Yarn

Click Here to Buy the Yarn

Another note: This is a free pattern which is not to be used for commercial gain. Feel free to tell your friends and use it how you like but respect the artist!

A special thanks to Melissa. Visit and support her sites which are:
http://madebymelissa.etsy.com
http://madebymelissa.blogspot.com

http://etsynj.blogspot.com

KNIT: Slipper Pattern Now Available

September 12, 2009

Click Here For the Pattern!

Click Here For the Pattern!

I’m so excited about this project. Faith, my friend and one of our most loyal and fantastic Darn Good Yarners came up with this cool pattern which is just in time for the fall season! Hoo-rah! (Oh I sounded very Air Force for a second!)

Don’t let your imagination cease with this pattern. These great slippers are great for travel as well as around the house! I am making a pair for myself for when I fly on planes because they roll up into my purse and when I’m on the plane I can slip off my shoes and stick these puppies on….ah bliss!

Click Here For the Pattern!

Click Here For the Pattern!

You can also easily make a couple pairs for when you have guests to your house. Knit them up a pair to wear around your place and then let them take them home to enjoy and remember their time with you!

This pattern calls for an old t-shirt or two and some Darn Good Yarn (come on you know you have that one with the stain on it that really needs to be re-purposed). You can use either two balls of the premium recycled silk yarn or two balls of the slightly unrefined silk both found by click on the following pictures:

Click Here for the Unrefined Recycled Silk

Click Here for the Unrefined Recycled Silk

Click here for DGY's Premium Recycled Silk Yarn

Click here for DGY's Premium Recycled Silk Yarn

The pattern is very easy to follow and would be suitable for a beginner too. The pattern is $3.99, an absolute steal for the versatility of the slippers!

Click Here For the Pattern!

Click Here For the Pattern!

I need your opinion

September 8, 2009

Thanks for your input!

Thanks for your input!

I’m trying to figure out what you all like as far as information from Darn Good Yarn. So, would you comment back to me.

Would you like the weekly emails letting you know what’s new on the website or would you like the emails plus a monthly (or so) newsletter too?

Thanks for your input! I hope everyone is having a great day!